Five months on from her stunning stoppage win in front of a sold-out crowd in Newcastle, World Middleweight Champion Savannah “The Silent Assassin” Marshall (11-0, 9 KO’s) makes a triumphant return to the North East in March for a third defence of her WBO Women’s Middleweight World Championship.
Standing opposite the Hartlepool heroine will be former WBO Female Middleweight Champion and current EBU European Female Middleweight Champion Femke Hermans (12-3, 5 KO’s), who took Marshall’s bitter rival Claressa Shields the distance when she challenged her for the unified WBA, WBC, and IBF female middleweight titles in 2018.
Marshall’s battle with the Belgian brawler takes place Saturday, March 12 in Newcastle (venue to be announced) and airs live and exclusively across the UK on Sky Sports. The full card, co-promoted by BOXXER and Wasserman Boxing, will be announced shortly.
Shields is defending her titles in Wales this coming weekend; should she be successful – and should Marshall successfully defend her title in March – the stage could be set for one of the most long-awaited showdowns in recent memory and the biggest fight in the history of women’s professional boxing.
First though Marshall must contend with Hermans. Following her stunning second-round stoppage of the previously-undefeated Lolita Muzeya in October, Marshall heads into the bout as a favourite. But Hermans has her eyes firmly on the prize: upset the defending champion and secure herself a rematch against Shields.
“After the reception I received last time I’m really excited to fight in Newcastle again. The fans were unbelievable and I couldn’t have asked for a better turnout or better support. That was a great night and I can’t wait to do it again,” said Marshall.
“Femke and I were due to fight last year, but she tested positive for covid in fight week so it was called off at the last minute. We know each other quite well – she’s studied me, I’ve studied her. She’s only ever lost to the best in the world and she’s a former world champion herself, so I’m looking at a tough night in Newcastle.”
Ben Shalom, BOXXER founder and CEO, commented, “It’s great to announce that Savannah will return to Newcastle on March 12th. She has quite rightly cemented herself at the pinnacle of women’s boxing. Headlining in Newcastle last time was a very special moment that I believe marked her arrival on the centre stage of British sport. She’s got a very tough opponent for this key defence on March 12 and I hope we’re in for another landmark performance.”
Adam Smith, Head of Boxing Development at Sky Sports, said, “Wonderful news that Savannah Marshall is back defending her WBO World Middleweight Crown in Newcastle – where she shone last time out! Sav is becoming a massive name now in her native North East and she must overcome former world champion Femke Hermans in order to keep her mega match with Claressa Shields on track!
“Savannah will also be with us in Cardiff this weekend to spy on Claressa’s WBC/WBA and IBF title clash with Ema Kozin – can both boxing stars keep their belts for a huge battle of the undisputed champions this summer?”
“We’re excited to be back in the North East for what promises to be a spectacular night of boxing in Newcastle,” said Kalle Sauerland, Head of Global Boxing at Wasserman. “Savannah Marshall vs. Femke Hermans headlines an action-packed card that will also feature incredible talent from the Wasserman Boxing and Boxxer stables in this co-promoted event live on Sky Sports. We look forward to announcing more details soon.”
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